Badwater® Cape Fear

Here is a sequence of images of the Badwater Cape Route route which shows the race setting and the actual race route. Race entrants, family, and staff will travel to Bald Head Island via ferry from Southport, NC. The race itself will start at the Old Baldy Lighthouse, then traverse essentially all of the car-free (golf carts only!) roads on the island, explore a 1.5 mile stretch of forest path through the Bald Head Woods Maritime Forest Reserve, and then the crux of the race: 38 miles on the beach between Cape Fear and Fort Fisher which is completed up and back twice, with racers rounding legendary Cape Fear itself four times before their 51.4 mile adventure comes to a close.

The images were shot by Chris Kostman in May, August, and November of 2013 over multiple days, but placed in geographic order, just like the flow of the race. Runners featured in the images include Laurie Kostman, Meredith Dolhare, and Rebecca Byerly, plus Chris himself, as well as runners in the August 14, 2013 Turtle Trot 5k hosted by Bald Head Island Conservancy, and runners in the November 9, 2013 Maritime Classic 10k held on Bald Head Island.

The official charity of the event is the Bald Head Island Conservancy, which will will serve as Race Headquarters as well as checkpoints at mile 3, mile 4, mile 12, mile 32, and then the finish at mile 51.4. Some images of the Conservancy headquarters and their work protecting sea turtle nesting sites are also included as well.

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Badwater® Cape Fear

Wild, beautiful, stunning Cape Fear, Bald Head Island, and Fort Fisher, North Carolina! A runner's paradise.

BADWATER CAPE FEAR is a 50km/51.4-mile ultra running race featuring a twelve-mile warm-up on the car-free, one-lane-wide roads of Bald Head


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Wild, beautiful, stunning Cape Fear, Bald Head Island, and Fort Fisher, North Carolina! A runner's paradise.

BADWATER CAPE FEAR is a 50km/51.4-mile ultra running race featuring a twelve-mile warm-up on the car-free, one-lane-wide roads of Bald Head Island, followed by 19 or 38 miles of running on the east beach of the island and the wild and secluded sandy beach between Cape Fear and Fort Fisher. The race is held along the Atlantic Seaboard with spectacular views of the Frying Pan Shoals to the east and the undeveloped marshlands and Cape Fear River to the west. It is a dramatic, invigorating, inspiring setting to experience Cape Fear at ground level in all its grandeur! Nearly forty miles of beach trekking against the clock, even in this absolutely gorgeous setting, is no small feat. After those first 10.4 miles on paved roads and a 1.5 mile trail through a maritime forest reserve, it will be just you and your fellow BADWATER® runners amidst the sand, wind, sun, and ocean. Emphasizing self-sufficiency and minimal distractions, there will be just three aid station locations along the 51-mile route (visited a total of nine times). You will see almost no modernity (other than fishermen/women during a few miles of the north end of the beach trek) and hear nothing but wind, birds, and waves. This exquisite natural setting is the perfect antidote to the “real world” and a wonderful counterpart to the desert sands of Death Valley and Anza-Borrego Desert featured in the two West Coast BADWATER® races. Bald Head Island and nearby Southport, NC are ideal vacation get-away spots for the entire family, located less than one hour from Wilmington, NC and its major airport with Delta and US Airways service (flying into Myrtle Beach, SC is another option.) Once the remarkable beauty and quaint southern charm of this area are experienced once, we anticipate that most BADWATER® CAPE FEAR participants will make this race an annual pilgrimage and that most will incorporate a week-long family vacation as well. It is really that fantastic!

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